Paizo Update from Jeff Alvarez

Monday, September 20, 2021

My public statement on Wednesday was a fundamental expression of Paizo’s commitment to diversity and inclusion, values that I share both personally and professionally. It was an opening statement—not the final word on the topic by any means.

Words are important.

But I also know that actions are even more important.

As a result, I want to share with you a number of actions that address some of the concerns that have been brought to our attention over the last week.

The welfare and safety of our employees is paramount. No employee will ever be fired for whistleblowing or advocating for employee safety and wellbeing, and we have never fired an employee for doing so.

Following our return from Gen Con, the Executive Team will schedule individual meetings with our managers to give them a chance to share concerns directly. In the coming weeks, Paizo will issue an independently managed employee engagement survey to provide all employees with an anonymous means to provide candid feedback. The information provided through this process is aimed at addressing employee concerns and driving change to create a more positive workplace.

We take all claims of harassment seriously. Our CEO Lisa Stevens released a statement in 2019 that underscores Paizo’s stance on this matter, and it applies today as well. You can read that here: https://paizo.com/community/guidelines.

We held staff-wide in person anti-harassment training in 2018 and initiated annual mandatory online training earlier in 2021.

We are currently finalizing a job description to fill a vacant full-time HR position. You’ll see this posted in the next few business days, and we’ll be looking for a candidate with expertise in diversity, equity, and inclusion. It is important to all of us that this professional can help us to maintain Paizo’s shared commitment to our values in recruitment, hiring, and daily operations.

In the meantime, we are encouraging our employees to make use of the free independent human resources hotline Paizo initiated in 2018, where they can report grievances of any kind in complete confidentiality.

Paizo makes decisions about employee convention attendance based on the business and community needs of the show, irrespective of gender or gender identity. However, it is time that Paizo evolves from the longtime practice of employees sharing rooms during convention and business travel. As such, we have enacted a one-employee-per-room policy that will be our standard moving forward. Employees can request to share a room if they so choose.

We are extending Paizo’s existing work-from-home timeline through at least the end of the year. Employees that want to work from the office can continue to do so but will need to abide by the company’s existing vaccination and mask policies. We will continue to follow CDC guidelines and keep our employees as safe as possible during the pandemic by offering work-from-home and a safe office space for those who prefer that option.

Over the last several years, we have invested heavily in Project Management to help the company get a better sense of workload in the Creative Department, implementing company-wide project management software and increasing the size of the project management team. This work has already resulted in increased production schedule lead times, and Paizo will continue to leverage this valuable resource to provide better work/life balances for our employees.

In the same period, the creation of additional management positions within the Creative Department has also helped give staff better access to managers, and to empower those managers to better gauge deadlines and workloads. As with our Project Management initiatives, this is an ongoing process, but it is already bearing fruit and improving not just Paizo’s products, but the lives of the brilliant creatives who make them possible.

To clear up some confusion that has worked its way into the conversation, freelancer relations remains the purview of the Creative Department. Paizo freelancers who appreciate their strong relationship with our developers, editors, and art team can be assured that we have made no changes on this front.

Finally, based on feedback from the staff, we changed professional cleaning services in 2017, and the offices have been cleaned and vacuumed on a regular basis since then.

These aren’t the only things we are doing. We are building strategies to address the challenges facing the company and will strive to be more transparent about our plans as we build stronger lines of communication with everyone at Paizo. We are committed to listening. We are committed to continuing to improve based on the feedback of our teams. There will be more messages, and more concrete actions, to come.

--Jeff

More Paizo Blog.
Tags: Paizo
1,001 to 1,050 of 1,466 << first < prev | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | 21 | 22 | 23 | 24 | 25 | 26 | next > last >>

Carrauntoohil wrote:
Yoshua wrote:
So, it is a grey area.

Paizo, including their website, specifically operate within Europe and are, therefore, required to comply with EU data protection requirements, including the General Data Protection Regulation.

This was (at least two instances of) a malicious breach by senior management of the company that went unrectified for at least several weeks in one case and almost two years in the other.

In fact, ast least one such breach was doubled down on by that senior manager, who is the president of the company to this day.

Fines in this instance can stretch up to 5% of global turnover per instance to a maximum of €20m, again per instance.

It is hard to see how deliberate malfeasance would not attract the maximum penalty.

I love a lack of grey areas arising from respect for personal data.

Thank you for sharing EU law. It is nice to see how other parts of the world's jurisprudence works.

Grand Lodge

15 people marked this as a favorite.
Cori Marie wrote:
Andy Brown wrote:
Kobold Cleaver wrote:
I'm still deciding how I feel about this

Me too.

The union should be a good thing for the staff, but it feels like there's been a general shift from "acknowledge and fix any transphobia or no more purchases" to "acknowledge the union or no more purchases", which feels like transpeople being ditched as soon as some other cause comes along (as usual)
Hi Trans person here, I'm one of them that is focused on the union getting recognized, because a union will help prevent similar things in the future. Please don't pretend you speak for every trans person here.

At least one of the trans players I ran through Hell's Rebels got very upset about this whole thing, and has now told me they support the union as a solution, so I'm mostly taking cues from the exact people whose feelings I'm most worried about.

Apart from that, however, a union shifts the conversation so that we no longer have to trust management at all. Granted, I will still be SPITTING ANGRY if they never acknowledge the transphobia, and everyone above the union line will be forevermore effectively dead to me, but a union will give the content creators the power to fight transphobia when it comes up from now on, and I trust THEM. Apparently, content creators were the ones responsible for everything I loved and trusted in the first place, so I have no problem shifting all of my love and support to them instead of management.

I'd love to be proven wrong about management, but I'll settle for supporting a company where I know the trans-friendly workers have enough power to make demands and to be paid more fairly for their contributions.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Terevalis Unctio of House Mysti wrote:
Thank you for sharing EU law. It is nice to see how other parts of the world's jurisprudence works.

I would be interested in learning if Jeff was aware of any potential international legal implications (particularly given that shipping address is no indicator of or genuine location of residence) when he went off half-cocked or if it was further evidence poor leadership by extremely senior management in the company.

Either way, it's not a good look and is, frankly, despicable from a company that expects to be trusted with personal information regardless of the legality of the situation.

And I take great comfort in the fact that should a similar fit of pique take place in my case, I would be excellently protected.


3 people marked this as a favorite.
firegazer wrote:
I'd love to be proven wrong about management, but I'll settle for supporting a company where I know the trans-friendly workers have enough power to make demands and to be paid more fairly for their contributions.

The Union have enough of the good names on board that I'd buy their OGL content for the rest of my life rather than anything Paizo created if it ever came to that.


3 people marked this as a favorite.
Tender Tendrils wrote:
Andy Brown wrote:
Kobold Cleaver wrote:
I'm still deciding how I feel about this

Me too.

The union should be a good thing for the staff, but it feels like there's been a general shift from "acknowledge and fix any transphobia or no more purchases" to "acknowledge the union or no more purchases", which feels like transpeople being ditched as soon as some other cause comes along (as usual)
Yeah, all the people saying that if they acknowledge the union they will resubscribe has caused me the same worry.

I share your concerns, but I think you can reach out to the union itself with them. They are seeking a greater voice in the company because they want to have a say in the company and its public presence. They are asking for greater accountability, but also asking for greater agency for which they, too, should be accountable.

I support the union and I have also sent them a note asking for them to make this issue part of their public facing platform. They can decline or ignore that, of course, but I don't believe this needs to be a suffering from the sidelines sort of affair. They want to do good, let them know what good means to you!


1 person marked this as a favorite.

It's often the case that the more customer-friendly companies are not so much employee-friendly. Not sure if it's about lower profit margins (after all, Paizo is giving away for free most of their creative effort), but I think that the unionization is a step in the right direction. It is more likely to improve working conditions there, as well as relations (which includes battling transphobic behavior in workplace and similar issues).

Scarab Sages

2 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure, Adventure Path, Lost Omens, PF Special Edition, Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Carrauntoohil wrote:
Yoshua wrote:
So, it is a grey area.

Paizo, including their website, specifically operate within Europe and are, therefore, required to comply with EU data protection requirements, including the General Data Protection Regulation.

This was (at least two instances of) a malicious breach by senior management of the company that went unrectified for at least several weeks in one case and almost two years in the other.

In fact, ast least one such breach was doubled down on by that senior manager, who is the president of the company to this day.

Fines in this instance can stretch up to 5% of global turnover per instance to a maximum of €20m, again per instance.

It is hard to see how deliberate malfeasance would not attract the maximum penalty.

I love a lack of grey areas arising from respect for personal data.

I work in this area and have to deal with GDPR data and it's a very murky murky area. It's so loose that some of the best GDPR lawyers around are unsure to answer some of the "problems" I've ran into. Most of the GDPR stuff has to do with data processing itself. In GDPR for example; Names aren’t always considered personal data. AND it also depends on what you consent to give those companies in their Terms of Service. There are some protections that GDPR gives consumers: the right to be informed, the right of access, the right to rectification, the right to erasure, the right to restrict processing, the right to data portability, the right to object and also rights around automated decision making and profiling... Again most of these are around making sure that algorithms don't go rogue or that information doesn't "leak" in biased ways. Part of the murkiness is that company can store encrypted data about a user as long as it's "necessary to run its business." Also GDPR only offers protection to EU citizens. So if a company was found breaching some GDPR policy it has to apply to the EU; which is why many companies segment their businesses to still do additional things with non-EU data. (GDPR is still somewhat new so I am not an expert. I also believe that every country should have many of the GDPR protections).


GDPR? Che cosa?


10 people marked this as a favorite.

General Data Protection Regulation aka GDPR, or how EU made the world ask you if you want to accept the cookies on the website.


4 people marked this as a favorite.
GM Lamplighter wrote:
Don't engage with bad-faith distractions.

You're not helping your cause. You don't gain allies by assuming anyone who asks a question is engaging in bad-faith.

You will find ZERO instances of knowingly insensitive comments from me in the ten or whatever years I've been here. Because I am not the enemy.

I asked my question legitimately. This is an emotionally-charged time and there's plenty of motivation for someone to stir the pot by staging a fake unionization effort. To think such a thing could be on the table shouldn't just be thought of as possible, but even probable.

Note that ZERO of what I said touched on if a unionization effort was a good thing or a bad thing, or the reasons that have spawned the effort. I was very, very careful to focus my question. Because I don't want ANYONE getting screwed over by something that isn't real, and the perspective of skepticism seemed to be missing from the thread. Perspective is all I've got to contribute at this time, so I offered what little support I've got.

But being dismissed the way you've done... it's just... depressing.


Staffan Johansson wrote:
Anguish wrote:

Silly question... how do we know this unionization thing is real?

Any bozo can set up a couple web sites full of whatever they want. This could just as easily be a random forum denizen manipulating the situation (right or wrong) and not be legitimate at all. With it selling merch - in particular - I'm lacking confidence.

There's a recent four-year-period that has demonstrated that what you read and what is real aren't always in sync.

In short, what if Russia* is behind this.

*Where Russia indicates "outside bad-faith actor of any kind or origin."

Multiple people working for or otherwise associated with Paizo have linked to the twitter thread announcing the union and otherwise expressed their support for it. I mean, it's possible that e.g. Logan Bonner's account has been hacked and/or been a mole all along waiting for this moment, but it does not seem particularly likely.

Thank you. I don't do social media, so I didn't know verified sources were endorsing this.

Of the many bad things going on right now, a bunch of Paizo employees losing their jobs because some jackalope set up a troll web site and management didn't like their getting involved, would be still more suckage.


5 people marked this as a favorite.

Don't forget the doxxing.

Liberty's Edge

10 people marked this as a favorite.

Time for management to put their money where their mouth is.
We’ll see if Paizo stays true to it’s progressive veneer or if that crumbles.

Either way, I support the union and the workers!

Bet whoever kicked off the firing weeks ago didn’t expect this domino effect.


11 people marked this as a favorite.
Cori Marie wrote:
Andy Brown wrote:
Kobold Cleaver wrote:
I'm still deciding how I feel about this

Me too.

The union should be a good thing for the staff, but it feels like there's been a general shift from "acknowledge and fix any transphobia or no more purchases" to "acknowledge the union or no more purchases", which feels like transpeople being ditched as soon as some other cause comes along (as usual)
Hi Trans person here, I'm one of them that is focused on the union getting recognized, because a union will help prevent similar things in the future. Please don't pretend you speak for every trans person here.

Neither of us were speaking for every trans person on the forums, or even coming close to doing so. I feel a little hurt at being read this way, considering we both made sure to couch our statements firmly as "feelings" we had. Your intention may not have been directly addressing me, but Andy was essentially echoing my (very mixed) feelings on the matter.

It is very hard to know how to feel about this, honestly. I'm still sifting through it. Crystal Frasier and Sara Marie have both stated their support for the union, and recognizing it is obviously a good. I personally support the union, and I expect Andy does too. Will I come back to Paizo if they recognize the union--a union the strength of which we won't know until we see what it accomplishes beyond its own recognition--but still refuse to say anything about the transphobia? I don't know. I don't know how I feel about being encouraged to declare that the union is the sole condition of forgiveness. There are some really weak unions out there. Companies sometimes even allow placeholder weak unions to avoid stronger ones forming. Is recognition alone enough? We'll see.

Assuming we're speaking in bad faith when we openly express concerns will make this a very hostile environment to honestly discuss our feelings in. I don't know a more elegant way to put that. Please, I understand if you feel concerned that our voices will be the loudest trans voices here, but keep in mind our voices are not inherently an attack on yours.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Zexcir wrote:
I work in this area

I too work in this area, and the name, in each case, was absolutely both provided, processed and leaked as an identifier as defined in Article 4 of the Regulation.

More GDPR:
The GDPR is not specifically around making sure algorithms don't go rogue and that is a bizarre claim to make, given that the Regulation specifically refers to data that is processed wholly, partly or in a non-automated manner for filing purposes. Storage in eletronic data bases is well established as processing in an automated manner, even in cases where manual retrieval occurs, as happened in both cases being discussed.

Article 5(1)(b) prevents data from being processed in a way that is incompatible with the legitimate purposes for which it is provided. Releasing names via online forums in order to intimidate customers is, pretty soundly, not within the legitimate purposes for which that data was provided.

Aaaannnddd.... even if you might try to argue on the Article 5 issues and claim that that was a legitimate purpose, consent for the data to be processed in that manner was withdrawn a couple of weeks prior to the identifiers being redacted - in line with Article 7(3).

What is murky from the regulation is if protection only applies to citizens. The Regulation (Article 3) refers to data subjects who are in the Union, not to data subjects who are citizens of the Union and wider principles of EU law confirm that anyone residing in the Union wold be equally protected.

If either data subject had been on a holiday, or even a work trip, at the time of the breaches, they may arguably be protected.

Agreed that the protections should be more widely available in other jurisdictions, but I'm not optimistic.


3 people marked this as a favorite.
Totally Not Gorbacz wrote:
General Data Protection Regulation aka GDPR, or how EU made the world ask you if you want to accept the cookies on the website.

A masterful summation of the facts, as always.

I mean... not as always, mysterious stranger with no history on these forums whatsoever.

Grand Lodge

5 people marked this as a favorite.

I support the notion of the union and I hope it works out, but i will stop short of giving it my 100% unconditional endorsement. I want to see what they ask for/demand. I have seen first hand how a union can get out of hand. How they can ask for unsustainable or even unreasonable compensation packages. How the employer can be pressured to agree to the terms knowing that it will be a disaster long-term. How it can take a herculean effort to fix those problems later. Certainly the union will fix some of the issues immediately, like the hotel room issue, office cleanliness (which is first and foremost an OSHA issue), OT expectations with/out compensation, etc. I look forward to watching how this unfolds.

Grand Lodge

1 person marked this as a favorite.

Regarding the GDPR:
Remember, GDPR is not the law of the land in the US and the EU does not have jurisdiction here. Unless a US company has a presence (not just sales) in the EU, they are not necessarily obligated to follow the doctrine. There is only a tacit endorsement of the rules by the US and unless a law entity in the US really, REALLY wants to go after a violator probably due to pressure from the EU, it is unlikely anything would come of it. Paizo is a very small fish in a very large international online pool. Unless they were to do something incredibly dumb, like not only ignore the GDPR, but flaunt that they weren't following it, nothing is going to happen. And even then, if the EU was to try and sanction or prosecute a US company without any physical presence in the EU, it would require significant assistance from the US government to do so, something that is incredibly hit or miss. There is a not insignificant portion of the US and its governance that disagrees with some aspects of the GDPR.

When I was still volunteering with org play, there were a few points of the GDPR that we were aware of, and willfully ignoring. I cannot speak to whether or not that is still the case.

Horizon Hunters

3 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber
TwilightKnight wrote:
I support the notion of the union and I hope it works out, but i will stop short of giving it my 100% unconditional endorsement. I want to see what they ask for/demand. I have seen first hand how a union can get out of hand. How they can ask for unsustainable or even unreasonable compensation packages. How the employer can be pressured to agree to the terms knowing that it will be a disaster long-term. How it can take a herculean effort to fix those problems later. Certainly the union will fix some of the issues immediately, like the hotel room issue, office cleanliness (which is first and foremost an OSHA issue), OT expectations with/out compensation, etc. I look forward to watching how this unfolds.

Realizing the my family’s poor experience with unions is but one example, I really am trying to be open-minded about this union. And TK has outlined a number of my concerns. So, to the extent that this union will improve a whole host of working conditions at Paizo, I support it - but I’m going to be watchful about it doing the things TK raises above. I hope it doesn’t - I hope it is successful and does so by being reasonable in what it demands. And, for Paizo’s end, I hope they agree to reasonable things (a decent living wage, improved working environment that is clean and complies with OSHA standards, improved and fair treatment for all staff, etc.). What I don’t want to see is a bunch of fighting between the two, either because the union asks for too much or Paizo just digs in and refuses even reasonable requests.

As others have said, this is a pretty new thing in publishing, so I fully expect there to be some fits and starts and some missteps by one side, the other, or both. But there is a lot of potential for something really good to come of this - for both the Paizo staff and Paizo itself. I hope that’s what ultimately happens.


12 people marked this as a favorite.
Mark Stratton wrote:
TwilightKnight wrote:
I support the notion of the union and I hope it works out, but i will stop short of giving it my 100% unconditional endorsement. I want to see what they ask for/demand. I have seen first hand how a union can get out of hand. How they can ask for unsustainable or even unreasonable compensation packages. How the employer can be pressured to agree to the terms knowing that it will be a disaster long-term. How it can take a herculean effort to fix those problems later. Certainly the union will fix some of the issues immediately, like the hotel room issue, office cleanliness (which is first and foremost an OSHA issue), OT expectations with/out compensation, etc. I look forward to watching how this unfolds.

Realizing the my family’s poor experience with unions is but one example, I really am trying to be open-minded about this union. And TK has outlined a number of my concerns. So, to the extent that this union will improve a whole host of working conditions at Paizo, I support it - but I’m going to be watchful about it doing the things TK raises above. I hope it doesn’t - I hope it is successful and does so by being reasonable in what it demands. And, for Paizo’s end, I hope they agree to reasonable things (a decent living wage, improved working environment that is clean and complies with OSHA standards, improved and fair treatment for all staff, etc.). What I don’t want to see is a bunch of fighting between the two, either because the union asks for too much or Paizo just digs in and refuses even reasonable requests.

As others have said, this is a pretty new thing in publishing, so I fully expect there to be some fits and starts and some missteps by one side, the other, or both. But there is a lot of potential for something really good to come of this - for both the Paizo staff and Paizo itself. I hope that’s what ultimately happens.

The problem with this argument is that it implicitly treats the conflict as the result of there being a union, when it is clear that conflict between workers and management exists right now and has for years. A union might resolve that conflict or it might fail, but it certainly won't start it.

Giving one party in a conflict more ability to resist doesn't create a conflict, even if it makes it more apparent to those outside.


20 people marked this as a favorite.

The union has come out in support of trans rights.

Grand Lodge

3 people marked this as a favorite.

I disagree. The union is not, and never is the fundamental source of the problem, but it can often contribute to the overall conflict getting worse. If the only issues that come up during negotiations are the ones that have already been expressed and are the reason for the union action in the first place, then certainly it will work or Paizo will be exposed and die.

OTOH, it is possible the union could bring a whole new laundry list of demands to the table that exacerbate the divide. We would all like to think that won't happen and that the staff are smart enough to know what is a reasonable demand. However, there are a lot of us who have been party to their union, for a lack of a better phrase, "lose their damn minds" when approaching management.

One of the reason why unions have a mixed existence in the US is that for every story of worker empowerment, there is a story of corruption and mismanagement. The teamsters being the poster child, but far from the only example. The Illinois teacher's union (especially the Chicago chapter) and our state pension plan are two more examples. My own IBEW has had our share of problems and bad faith negotiations even when, as individuals, those involved are otherwise good, smart, reasonable people. A lot can happen when your very livelihood is threatened and emotions get involved, even those with good intentions. Its one of the reasons why many states have started "busting" collective bargaining with right to work laws (regardless of our personal opinions on that topic).

I wish everyone the best of luck and that they get everything they deserve out of this new endevour.


4 people marked this as a favorite.

My issue is that what I have been asking for is Paizo to address the transphobia thing -I support the union forming, but Paizo recognizing the union is NOT the same as them addressing the transphobia thing - it is great if the union gets things closer to that outcome, but it would be premature to start giving Paizo my business again just because they recognize the union.

Unions also work by negotiating, which sometimes means making concessions on some issues to reach a compromise. There is no guarantee that whatever finally gets settled on doesn't leave out taking responsibility for the transphobia issue in favour of getting the other issues sorted.

Letting Paizo management off the hook and resubscribing just because they recognize the union means Paizo gets your subscriptions back essentially for free - if they don't recognize the union the union will still form via a vote anyway, so it costs them nothing to recognize the union (and gains them a bunch of goodwill).

Grand Lodge

3 people marked this as a favorite.

At this point, now that there is a union that will be negotiating a list of demands, I would not expect Paizo to say or do anything. They will wait and use anything and everything up to and including public statements as a bargaining tool. At this point, why give anything away for free when it has negotiation value?

I am not saying this is the way it SHOULD be, but the employees should not have been felt compelled to form a union just to get basic respect and fundamental compensation either.


20 people marked this as a favorite.
MadamReshi wrote:
The union has come out in support of trans rights.

This is a strong statement. I would be very happy to see the union recognized, and assuming it is recognized, and we can see management working with the union in good faith, I will feel much more comfortable with this company again. I agree fully with Twisted Tendrils--simply recognizing it isn't enough.

In my mind, a union will assure that what happened to Crystal will never happen again. As much as I would like whoever was responsible to face consequences, I'm seeing this now as a restorative justice issue: Crystal Frasier supports the union. The union will help to address the problem. I will trust the union to internally seek long-term accountability where it is due. I just need to see that Paizo management recognizes the union and engages with it productively.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
TwilightKnight wrote:
** spoiler omitted **

Oh, sure it would be difficult but not impossible to enforce.

However, since I brought up the GDPR first, I should probably explain my reasons for doing so:

1. I'm pretty happy that any legal protections I have from similar circumstances extend beyond charges of doxxing or harassment. This is as it should be and I wish more people had those protections.

2. It demonstrates one of either two things. Especially since it happened twice. Either
(i) Jeff behaved in a fit of pique on two separate occasions without giving thought to the ramifications his actions might have for the company he represented at the time and continues to represent. Remember, Paizo certainly does have international forum users and customers. Both would be protected from such actions. I'm pretty sure the only shipping info Paizo have for me is from when I lived in Australia. I am now safely within the bosom of my EU home, so even if the addresses held by Paizo were checked, that doesn't mean they were correct at the time.

or
(ii) Jeff did consider the ramifications of those actions and decided that since there were lesser protections available to the individuals whose personal information he released, he decided to go ahead and do it.

I'm not sure which is worse


3 people marked this as a favorite.
Kobold Cleaver wrote:
I agree fully with Twisted Tendrils--simply recognizing it isn't enough.

Agreed with both of you.

Voluntarily recognising the union would have been a good first step in demonstrating the commitments in the various blog post vague assurances that we have received were genuine.

In fact, the longer this takes, the more concerned I am.

However, recognising the union would still only be a first step, and a small one. There are many issues that still need to be addressed with concrete action including transphobic policies & practices and the doxxing of customers by an executive of the company.

They are, imo, the two most serious issues that have still not been addressed. One received a half-hearted pseudo-mea-culpa. The other has yet to be even raised beyond a vague allusion to executives having gay(not sure of the relevance) staff that they kind of like and wouldn't say mean things in front of.


2 people marked this as a favorite.

Although somewhat tangential, I came across this twitter thread from a Comms person at Respawn Entertainment (studio that created the FPS game Apex Legends) on corporate comms strategy for when things go bad.

For those who don’t know, Respawn has been under intense pressure since an update last month caused consistent server issues that still have not been fixed (but you can bet an independent bug that caused players to be able to get better than average loot in random purchased packs was fixed within 3 hours). It is indicative of the approach of companies to consumer ire…

Liberty's Edge

Any word on a new full time HR? I know it’s a boring solution, but in my opinion it’s the most useful way forward.


6 people marked this as a favorite.
marv wrote:
Any word on a new full time HR? I know it’s a boring solution, but in my opinion it’s the most useful way forward.

It’s not that it might be boring, but that as several posters have pointed out there is the very real possibility that HR will only exist to protect the company from the workers. And that HR is all about Resources with the “resources” being the humans and the most useful extraction of labour from the humans at whatever cost can be squozened, mitigated or deffrayed.

And yes in fact no, squozened is compleatly a word.


6 people marked this as a favorite.

Most of my experience with HR departments/HR reps in the workplace has been them either taking disciplinary action against me, or making excuses for the behaviour of people who are higher in the hierarchy than me. It sometimes seems like HR complaints only get actioned if they roll downhill.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
OCEANSHIELDWOLPF 2.0 wrote:
marv wrote:
Any word on a new full time HR? I know it’s a boring solution, but in my opinion it’s the most useful way forward.

It’s not that it might be boring, but that as several posters have pointed out there is the very real possibility that HR will only exist to protect the company from the workers. And that HR is all about Resources with the “resources” being the humans and the most useful extraction of labour from the humans at whatever cost can be squozened, mitigated or deffrayed.

And yes in fact no, squozened is compleatly a word.

A perfectly cromulent word.

HR can be useful, especially with problems with lower level managers, since they're not so identified with the company as executives are. It becomes useful to protect the company by disciplining the managers causing problems. That's not likely to be as useful in this case, with a very small company and very short chains of command. HR fundamentally reports to the bosses.

Grand Lodge

4 people marked this as a favorite.
Tender Tendrils wrote:
Most of my experience with HR departments/HR reps in the workplace has been them either taking disciplinary action against me...

That is unfortunate, but all too common. Any company that has HR reps issue disciplinary action does not understand how hierarchy and supervision should work. Disciplinary action should always and virtually without exception be issued by an employee's supervision element, particularly their direct supervisor/manager. HR should be there only to ensure all parties (especially the management) are complying with the company's rules and legal requirements. They should never be the source of, nor the delivery tool for corrective action.

Dark Archive

9 people marked this as a favorite.
TwilightKnight wrote:
HR should be there only to ensure all parties (especially the management) are complying with the company's rules and legal requirements. They should never be the source of, nor the delivery tool for corrective action.

I know this; you know this; and it is why workers need unions.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
OCEANSHIELDWOLPF 2.0 wrote:
It’s not that it might be boring, but that as several posters have pointed out there is the very real possibility that HR will only exist to protect the company from the workers.

Both my dad and my sister in-law are qualified HR professionals working in the field. At different stages, both my spouse and I have had recourse to refer matters to our own HR for resolution.

In conversation in both of our personal experiences (and yes, I mean direct responses from HR), and with people in the same field in other circumstances it has been confirmed to us, in writing, that the role of HR is to act on the company's behalf and not the workers'.

That is literally what a union is designed to counteract.

Liberty's Edge

1 person marked this as a favorite.

I can see my past positives experiences with HR might be an anomaly. I do, however, believe the owners of Paizo care about their employees and want to treat them fairly (and inclusively).

An experienced HR person can help make that vision a reality. And certainly almost every complaint I’ve heard about at Paizo could have been either prevented or quickly resolved by a strong HR (enforcing that vision on the managers).

Now, if the owners of Paizo don’t have that vision, then that is a different conversation. And a very sad one for which there is no hope.


3 people marked this as a favorite.
marv wrote:

I can see my past positives experiences with HR might be an anomaly. I do, however, believe the owners of Paizo care about their employees and want to treat them fairly (and inclusively).

An experienced HR person can help make that vision a reality. And certainly almost every complaint I’ve heard about at Paizo could have been either prevented or quickly resolved by a strong HR (enforcing that vision on the managers).

Now, if the owners of Paizo don’t have that vision, then that is a different conversation. And a very sad one for which there is no hope.

The idea isn't that all people in HR are sociopathic monsters. The system behind HR is inherently biased in favor of companies over people, though.

I've also had almost entirely positive experiences with HR at the various jobs I've had. I just also understand that they have an entirely different set of priorities than me.


15 people marked this as a favorite.

Just to offer another data point, both myself and a former partner experienced pretty massive workplace transphobia while working at the same major American retail corporation (I’m not naming names, but they mostly sell videogames) and both times HR treated us like dirt. Not only did the transphobes in question not see any punishment, we were both asked to apologize /to them/. Everything I’ve seen in the American corporate workplace is that HR exists to safeguard the company more than any vulnerable employees.

That said, Paizo not having an HR person at all is unacceptable, and their inability to retain one is damning. A brand that leans so heavily on queer representation needs to be better at handling its real queer employees than this.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
keftiu wrote:

Just to offer another data point, both myself and a former partner experienced pretty massive workplace transphobia while working at the same major American retail corporation (I’m not naming names, but they mostly sell videogames) and both times HR treated us like dirt. Not only did the transphobes in question not see any punishment, we were both asked to apologize /to them/. Everything I’ve seen in the American corporate workplace is that HR exists to safeguard the company more than any vulnerable employees.

That said, Paizo not having an HR person at all is unacceptable, and their inability to retain one is damning. A brand that leans so heavily on queer representation needs to be better at handling its real queer employees than this.

For claiming to be diverse as a company, Paizo seems to pick and chose what diversity they will highlight. Late on Hispanic Heritage month acknowledgment, nothing for Native American Heritage...


2 people marked this as a favorite.

Yeah their diversity seems quite marketing focused. Plenty of heritages to get attention but not really equal attention given….. but then I guess it is corporate diversity, not real diversity which is where it appears a large of the current disconnect comes from….. talking the talk, but not walking the walk…


5 people marked this as a favorite.
Berhagen wrote:
Yeah their diversity seems quite marketing focused. Plenty of heritages to get attention but not really equal attention given….. but then I guess it is corporate diversity, not real diversity which is where it appears a large of the current disconnect comes from….. talking the talk, but not walking the walk…

What is “real diversity”?


4 people marked this as a favorite.

To me, personally, it is about ensuring people are treated as individuals and we can celebrate diversity, and truly appreciate differences. Without then organizing ourselves in exclusionary groups.

Also (as an example) is about extending the same rights, benefits and options to partnerships independent of gender, sexual preference, etc. And to people caring for children (independent of “natural” parenthood or adopted children.

It is also about ensuring people have equal opportunities, based on merits, independent op ethnicity and about ensuring representation.

I acknowledge my view is colored by my own experiences, my (in my country) privilege, my job (very international, lots of nationalities and ethnicities, with quite a focus on gender equality, but probably less diverse in regards to education level and affluence).

And I see (in my own company) that while some minorities are able to achieve (close to) equal opportunities, the focus (despite 70% of people working outside the US) is massively colored by US perceptions of problems, instead of tailoring to local situations. Looking at the Netherlands (where I live) the disenfranchisement is largest for groups of North-African and Middle-Eastern ethnicity, and (I think) you see this in more European countries.

And while I see that (again my company) endeavors to promote healthcare equality in the US (which I acknowledge the need for), or does little to work on Healthcare equality in other counties (where you also see differences in access to healthcare for immigrant populations.

In my opinion making it a type of “checkbox” approach is not helpful, although I also understand you have to start somewhere…


2 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

What happens without a 'checkbox' is worse. There is a subset of every society that tries to suppress via semantics.

"Since X isn't called out, it's not a 'real' issue. Therefore the status quo is preferable, as it means less resources need to be expended."

That's a disturbing trend I've seen with folks that want to erase and/or control what a person thinks.

Silver Crusade

4 people marked this as a favorite.

I’m not the one declaring diversity and inclusiveness as bad for… simply existing?


7 people marked this as a favorite.
Rysky wrote:
I’m not the one declaring diversity and inclusiveness as bad for… simply existing?

I don't think that's what they're saying, though maybe I'm reading too generously.

I think it's fair to critique Paizo, especially in light of recent events, for marketing diversity rather than actually living it. For focusing on higher profile marginal groups - as Tervalis points out "Late on Hispanic Heritage month acknowledgment, nothing for Native American Heritage".
Or by parallel in Berhagen's company to focusing on perceptions of US problems rather than local discrimination.

"Checkbox" diversity can look like tokenism - "We've got our minority character covered, so shut up about that". Of course, as they also seem to admit, often without that you get no diversity all.


2 people marked this as a favorite.

That is indeed my concern, but thanks for explaining it more eloquently than I did.


8 people marked this as a favorite.
thejeff wrote:
I don't think that's what they're saying, though maybe I'm reading too generously.

Rysky has the extra context of this person debating with her about this in a different thread today (which you may or may not have seen), this person has been largely taking an "all lives matter"/"why isn't there a white history month?" approach (though without explicitly saying those exact phrases, just all of the usual rhetoric that falls under those umbrellas) in the extended conversation between the two threads.

1,001 to 1,050 of 1,466 << first < prev | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | 21 | 22 | 23 | 24 | 25 | 26 | next > last >>
Community / Forums / Paizo / General Discussion / Paizo Blog: Paizo Update from Jeff Alvarez All Messageboards